A question mark has been raised over the future of Eurostar’s link to Disneyland Paris.
The high speed Channel Tunnel passenger service last year announced it was halting its direct connection from London to the theme park outside the French capital from this summer and also stopped services calling at Ebbsfleet or Ashford International stations.
Eurostar cited reasons which included financial problems due to losses suffered during the height of the pandemic and post-Brexit border checks – with more time needed to stamp UK passengers’ passports.
Asked if the services would be reinstated in the future, chief executive Gwendoline Cazenave said: “We’ll see, it depends on the way we can handle the big stations’ issues.”
She said the company’s “objective” was to “be this backbone between big cities”, such as London, Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels.
“These are the main cities, these are the main markets…. we are working for, which is our main role I would say,” she told the BBC.
Eurostar is currently running 14 services a day between London and Paris, compared with 18 in pre-pandemic 2019 with 30% fewer passengers being carried.
Cazenave said the company might not restore some services suspended last year.
“The thing is now we are not able to run the same transport offer as what we had before in 2019, because of bottlenecks in stations,” she said.
“We have a main issue in Eurostar terminals because of the new boarding conditions between the UK and EU, because of the impact of Covid, because of staff in the stations.”
Cazenave added that Eurostar and both French and UK authorities were working hard on solutions such as having more border staff.
She was quoted as Eurostar unveiled new branding amid predictions of 30 million passenger carryings by 2030.